Saturday, December 17, 2011

Fast Facts -- December 15, 2011

December 15, 2011            


The 45th annual convention of the International Council of Air Shows welcomed 1,549 air show professionals from all over the world to a four-day meeting focused around conducting air show business and passing along useful air show information.  Convention delegates traveled from as far as New Zealand, Brazil, and Switzerland to meet with their air show colleagues and begin the process of planning for the 2012 air show season.
Although widely hailed as one of the smoothest running conventions in recent memory, with 1,549 registered delegates, this year's convention was not the most well attended, ranking behind the 2002 Convention (1,605), 2000 Convention (1,598) and 2010 Convention (1,559) in total attendance.
During the Chairman's  Banquet at last week's ICAS Convention, delegates got a sneak peak at the soon-to-be-released feature-length film, "Red Tails," due to be released on January 20. Producer Rick McCallum and actor Elijah Kelley (who plays the role of Samuel "Joker" George in the film) were on hand to tell ICAS delegates a bit about the film and introduce the trailer and a mini-documentary by executive producer George Lucas, explaining his two-decade involvement with the project.
To help ensure that this aviation-oriented film gets the good publicity it deserves, ICAS is encouraging all of its members to help promote the upcoming release of the movie by sharing, linking and otherwise helping to create internet "buzz" about this new film.
And the movie's producers are offering a little encouragement. Anybody who posts the trailer on their air show or air show performer website or shares the Red Tails Facebook page on their own Facebook page will be entered into a drawing for two tickets to the world premiere of Red Tails at the Ziegfeld Theatre in New York City on January 10, as well as tickets to the after party and two complimentary hotel nights in New York City.
To be entered in this sweepstakes, just create the link or share the page, and then send an email indicating that you have, to either or with information we can use to verify. We will then enter your name in the drawing.  A name will be drawn randomly from among all of those who demonstrate that they have done so by 5:00 p.m. EST on Thursday, December 22.
The Official Red Tails movie website is:              
The Official movie Facebook page is:
You can direct people to the Twitter feed about the movie at:
And you can direct your friends or create a link to the movie trailer at:
Air show legend Bob Hoover spoke to a captivated audience of nearly 1,500 ICAS members at the opening general session of the 2011 ICAS Convention on Monday, December 5. During an interview-style presentation moderated by former Good Morning America host David Hartman, Hoover recounted his 70+ year career in aviation, including discussions on his escape from a German POW camp during World War II, his interaction and relationship with aviation legend Charles Lindbergh, how he first learned to perform aerobatics while still in high school, and his thoughts on the development of the air show business during the last 50 years.
To help get the 2011 ICAS Convention off to a spectacular start, country music recording artist Dwayne O'Brien performed his song "We Remember" live at the ICAS Convention last week in Las Vegas, Nevada.  A passionate and active general aviation pilot, O'Brien also produced this video to be projected on the screens behind him while he sang.
The video has since "gone viral," on Facebook, You Tube, Air Show Buzz and other internet sites. We encourage all of our members to pass it along to friends and family as a way of explaining some of the passion that fuels our involvement and commitment to the air show business. (link:
ICAS member and air show performer Michael Goulian was presented with the 2011 ICAS Sword of Excellence during the Chairman's Banquet on Wednesday, December 7 at the ICAS Convention in Las Vegas.  Goulian was recognized for his own commitment to excellence and deep respect for the history of the air show business and the legacy of the industry's pioneers.
A successful aerobatic competition and Red Bull Air Race pilot, Goulian has been an air show performer for more than 25 years. Before he turned 30 years old, he had co-authored two different books on advanced aerobatic flying. And he has applied his extensive aerobatic experience to become one of the most exciting, popular and entertaining performers in the air show business today.
But he was presented with the Sword for the contributions that he has made to the air show industry during his career, as well as his ongoing efforts to increase professionalism within and raise overall awareness of the air show business.
Goulian joins a distinguished list of past recipients that includes Paul Poberezny, Bob Hoover, Charlie Hillard, Leo Loudenslager, Art Scholl, Charles Hutchins and Larry Gallogly.
Air show performer and ICAS member Dan Buchanan was recognized as the 2011 recipient of the prestigious Art Scholl Showmanship Award during ceremonies held in conjunction with last week's ICAS Convention.
This year's Scholl Award Selection Committee cited Buchanan not just for the entertainment value of his act, but also for the manner in which he inspires audiences, his versatility and resourcefulness as a performer, and his well-deserved reputation for being accommodating and completely professional. A full-time air show performer, Buchanan performs at 20-25 air shows every year with both a daytime and night show act that incorporate everything from comedy and fireworks to integrated music and an inspiring story of his efforts to overcome the injuries he suffered in an airplane accident many years ago.
The Scholl Award is given each year to air show performers who personify the high entertainment and showmanship standards that Art Scholl espoused during his time as an air show pilot in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. The award has come to symbolize the pinnacle of achievement for air show performers. Past recipients include Jim Franklin, the Royal Canadian Air Force Snowbirds, Bob Hoover, Sean Tucker, Tora Tora Tora, Leo Loudenslager, the French Connection, John Mohr and Kent Pietsch.
The 2011 Guardians of Freedom Air Show at the Nebraska Air National Guard Base in Lincoln, Nebraska was presented with the 2011 Dick Schram Memorial Community Relations Award during last Wednesday's Chairman's Banquet in Las Vegas.
Presented each year to the military base that makes best use of its air show or open house as a community relations tool, the Schram award is much more than a military air show of the year award. It recognizes military bases that use their event to do something more valuable and important than simple entertainment. The Lincoln, Nebraska Guard unit was recognized for a multi-dimensional effort to reach out into the community, forge important relationships with community leaders, and introduce citizens to the purpose and value of their local Air National Guard base.
Designated as an official 9/11 commemoration event and scheduled on the tenth anniversary of the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, the 155th Refueling Wing of the Nebraska Air National Guard also planned their air show this year to mark the 65th anniversary of the formation of their unit. From the beginning, the show was conceived and executed as an opportunity for local Air Guard personnel to establish stronger working relationships with local government, civic and philanthropic organizations by working with them on a day-to-day basis to plan and execute this event.
During the Chairman's Banquet on the evening of December 7, the Commemorative Air Force's Red Tail Squadron was presented with the ICAS Special Achievement Award for its new "Rise Above" program, conceived and developed as a tool to help inspire school-age children and young adults, using the story of the Tuskegee Airmen during World War II as an example of persevering and succeeding under difficult circumstances.
The program is built around a meticulously-restored P-51C Mustang painted in the squadron colors of the famed Tuskegee Airmen 332nd Fighter Squadron and an innovative tractor trailer that expands into a small, mobile theater at air shows, schools and other locations. The program encourages students to aim high, believe in themselves, use their brains, never quit, be ready to go, and expect to win.
From time to time, the ICAS Board of Directors votes to present its Special Achievement Award to an individual or organization that it would like to recognize for making a special contribution to the air show or aviation communities.
During the annual membership meeting on the morning of Wednesday, December 7, results of the recently completed Board of Directors election were announced. Those new Board members are Richard Cooper from Viper North in Mississauga, Ontario; Greg Hiser from Air Capital Insurance in Wichita, Kansas; and Ralph Royce with AirPros from Dickinson, Texas. All three will serve on the Board until December of 2014.
The new Board of Directors also selected its officers for 2010-2011. Judy Willey from the Oregon International Air Show in Hillsboro, Oregon will serve as chairman of the Board of Directors. Brigadier General Marcus Jannitto from the Rhode Island Air National Guard will serve as vice chairman. And Greg Hiser from Air Capital Insurance was selected as secretary/treasurer.
On Thursday, December 1, just prior to the beginning of the 2011 ICAS Convention, U.S. Air Force Air Combat Command issued the following statement regarding its plans to dramatically scale back its single-ship demonstration program during the 2012 air show season:
"We face significant fiscal constraints and are making tough decisions about the best ways to continue providing combat airpower to war fighting commanders, which is what we do as the Air Force's primary force provider.
"One decision we've made is to sponsor one single-ship demonstration team for the 2012 air show season, scaling back from the six teams we've historically sponsored – A-10 East & West, F-16 East & West, F-15E and F-22.
"For the 2012 season, we're sponsoring our F-22 demonstration team to perform at up to 20 shows. In addition to the F-22 demonstration team, the Thunderbirds are set to complete a full season next year, and their schedule will be announced next week at the International Council of Air Shows Convention.
"Reducing the number of single-ship demonstration teams will allow us to reallocate more than 900 sorties to our wings so they can maximize their flying hours for combat readiness training, offsetting some of the reduction we've seen in flying hours. Most importantly, reallocating those sorties will provide an increase in more than 25 combat-ready fighter pilots; that's a very good thing for our Nation and wise stewardship of our limited resources.
"The opportunity to showcase our aircrew at air shows around the country is important – and we're confident our Thunderbirds, F-22 demonstration team and Heritage Flight Foundation will continue highlighting the extraordinary work of all our Airmen."
The NTSB recently announced that it will hold a hearing next month to gather information about the safety of air races and air shows. During a one-day session on January 10, the board will hear from regulators, aviation organizations, industry groups, and airport authorities to learn about safety practices, procedures and protocols. The board also will gather information about the safety regulations and oversight in the planning and execution of these events.
ICAS President John Cudahy will be among those who testify at the public hearing next month.  A representative from the NTSB attended this month's ICAS Convention to learn more about the air show industry and its safety programming in advance of the public hearings.
Sponsorship support of the 2011 ICAS Convention was both much appreciated and invaluable. Please join us in expressing our appreciation to: The Horsemen; Air Boss & Consulting International, Inc.; AirSupport, LLC; Flash Fire Jet Trucks; FedEx Express; John Klatt Airshows and the Air National Guard; Gary Ward Airshows; Gordon Bowman-Jones; American Aerobatics - Julie Clark's Smokin' T-34 Mentor; Insurance Technologies and Programs, Inc.; Mach 1 Productions; Commemorative Air Force/Tora Tora Tora; Air Boss Inc - George Cline; Shannon & Luchs Insurance Agency, Inc.; Jim Peitz Aerosports; Jacquie 'B' Airshows; Team Rocket; Texas Flying Legends Museum; Goulian Aerosports; Team Oracle; Nalls Aviation, Inc.; Stallion 51 Corp.; Geico Skytypers; Rob Holland Ultimate Airshows, LLC; Ace Maker Airshows; Quick Silver P-51 Airshows; Michael Wiskus and Lucas Oil Airshows; Super Dave Airshows; David Martin Aerobatics; Jane Wicker Airshows; Tim Weber Airshows; Aerostars Formation Aerobatic Team; Jan Collmer Airshows/Point Five Video; OnBoard Images; Rob Reider, Air Show Announcer; Lee Production Services/Live Air Show TV; The Patriots Jet Team; Mohr Barnstorming; Herb Gillen Advertising; and Nflight Productions.        
© International Council of Air Shows, Inc.
750 Miller Drive SE, Suite F-3
Leesburg, Virginia 20175
Phone: 703-779-8510

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